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tv   Rock Center With Brian Williams  NBC  November 1, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm EDT

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and we are the team to beat. daly: ladies and gentlemen, these are the artists representing team cee lo at the live playoffs -- cody belew, mackenzie bourg, trevin hunte, nicholas david, and diego val. [ cheers and applause ] remember, if you liked what you heard tonight, full versions of the songs are available at itunes. i'm carson daly. thanks for watching "the voice." good night, everybody. [ cheers and applause ]
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tonight on "rock center," the fresh discoveries just today of even more devastation. >> how do we start over? >> and the new explosion of anger among victims who need help right now. >> something has to be done immediately. >> you need to come here and help us. >> also, the strange, dark and powerless world that lower manhattan has become. >> my neighbors have been wonderful. >> and across the river, we ride along with one very hands-on mayor. >> we've got some diapers. i hope these are going to fit. >> we also travel to the devastated jersey shore to see what remains of a treasured way of life.
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>> i first walked these boards holding my dad's hands when i was a little kid. >> tonight, following this massive storm and as the crisis it has triggered enters a new phase, we'll cover it all as "rock center" gets under way. good evening and welcome to "rock center." we have an enormous area of this country including the most densely populated region of the united states in the grips of an enormous and ongoing crisis tonight. this is another dark, cold night for millions of people and just today for a lot of people, things started feeling a little unhinged because some of the machinery of a civil society has stopped working. houses are ripped apart, people don't have power, they can't buy gasoline. kids aren't going to school. some don't have access to food or water. some new yorkers were looking for still fresh food in dumpsters today that stores had thrown out. the damage stretches for hundreds of miles.
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the death toll after rising again today stands at 94. and now we're seeing anger as officials learn for the first time of places that are devastated and cut off and not getting help. we begin tonight with nbc's savannah guthrie. >> reporter: 72 hours after sandy walloped the eastern seaboard from southern new jersey to connecticut and beyond, some things are getting better and some worse. particularly on staten island where today the true devastation became apparent. the death toll is rising and so is the anger. >> they're still looking for dead bodies. people that are held unaccountable for. so this death toll, it is going up. but you need to come here and help us. we need assistance. please. >> we have bodies being removed up the block. we are devastated here. there is no red cross. >> reporter: thousands of families left homeless continue to search through the debris. to salvage what little is left.
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and as temperatures drop, officials say power won't be fully restored for days. and some new york and connecticut suburbs, at least another week in the dark. elsewhere, clean-up and repair efforts tonight while patience wears thin. >> i have two 20-month-old babies. and my cars are under water. i don't have transportation out of here. and what are we supposed to do? we heard from a national grid guy that per's going to be out for six weeks. >> reporter: new york's mayor michael bloomberg promised more help is on the way. >> we'll begin distributing thousands of bottles of water and thousands of pre-prepared meals at a number of locations in hard-hit areas. >> reporter: the mayor says the city remains safe with few incidents of looting. and this sunday's new york marathon is on, a controversial decision because it will bring as many as 30,000 runners into the already struggled city, weaving through all five boroughs.
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today, getting around storm-damaged areas at times felt like an exercise in futility. huge lines are forming wherever drivers can find a gas station that has power and working pumps. >> we've been in line about 2 1/2 hours. >> reporter: how many gas stations did you pass before finding this one? >> all of them. i don't know, 20, 30. >> reporter: and a new rule that limits cars coming into new york city to only those with at least three passengers caused miles of incredible back-up at checkpoints. there is some good news. partial subway service was restored and the army corps of engineers is helping to empty a number of still-flooded tunnels. how much water are we talking about that you're going to need to pump out? >> our estimates right this point in time are 300 million to 400 million gallons of water. >> reporter: one silver lining from sandy, the floodwaters killed at least a few of the millions of rats that have been the menace of subway stations.
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but drinking water remains unsafe in many communities. floodwaters filled with a toxic brew of raw sewage and chemicals are making clean-up even harder. >> insurance companies are telling us to empty our houses out, to clean the stuff and leave it in our property. but is it safe for us to breathe in that stuff? it's all toxic. it's raw sewage. >> reporter: in coney island, the new york aquarium remains flooded. staffers are pumping the dirty water as fast as they can. but if they can't clear it soon, they'll have to somehow move all the animals. and along the battered jersey shore in those apocalyptic scenes of destruction, in seaside heights, one man got a first look at his destroyed business. >> we just cried. it's an emotional, emotional thing, you know? to lose everything like that in one night, one storm. >> reporter: finally in places like hoboken, new jersey, a city that was overwhelm bd flooding,
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those lucky enough to have power are sharing it with those who don't. and people like maggie are opening their homes for anyone who need the hot meal. >> i would so incredibly grateful that i had everything still intact that all i had to do was pay it back and pay it forward. >> reporter: instantly becoming one of a growing number of everyday heroes. >> that's kind of what we're dealing with here tonight. savannah guthrie starting us off this evening. and the anger is building in new york tonight. anger as you saw over the fact that the city thought it would be a good idea to go ahead and host the new york city marathon this weekend despite power outages and standing water. and anger is boiling as you also might have seen in staten island, a part of new york closer to new jersey, surrounded by water, temporarily cut off from the rest of the world and suffering.
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nbc's ann curry is there. >> reporter: it's becoming clear that staten island, an area three times the size of manhattan, is about 500,000 people suffer some of the greatest losses in all of new york. so far, 19 bodies have been recovered here and while many of the deaths occurred in evacuation areas, today residents complained about a lack of desperately needed help, and their anger exploded. >> we need help immediately. we have nowhere to live. we have small children that have to go back to school on monday. they have no clothes to wear. and we cannot live in our homes. something has to be done immediately, not 14 days from now, today. >> it was a bull's-eye of the storm. fema's not here. they're in new jersey, breezy point. they're everywhere, not an staten island. every single person on this block lost everything. do you know how many people died on this block? they're pulling goods out.
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>> reporter: it's hard to imagine anyone could neglect staten islanders when their stories are so harrowing. the sea water rose so fast, it was upon them in minutes. there was an off-duty police officer who rushed his family to safety in his attic and then is thought to have been electrocuted. and there was little diane could do but stand inside her living room holding her 89-year-old mother as the water rose. her mother drowned. and this afternoon, in a stoate island marsh, the discovery of the bodies of two boys dragged from their mother's arms from floodwaters. some residents fear they haven't seen the end of it. >> they're still looking for dead bodies. people held unaccounted for. this death toll is going up. but you need to come here and see it.
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we need help, please. >> reporter: the frustration was directed at the red cross -- >> the american red cross was nowhere to be found. all the american red cross, all these people making these big salaries should be out there on the front lines. and i am disappointed. >> reporter: the red cross says it is working to set up a mobile food kitchen and has ten emergency vehicles on the way. and today, some help was in plain view on staten island. emergency teams went house to house checking for signs of life, marking each home just was was done in new orleans. nypd inspector says new york police are doing their best. how do you account for the outrage? >> i can understand their pain and how they feel. and i just want them to understand that as best they can, i know the city of new york, i know the mayor and the police commissioner are doing everything they can to get these
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people back on their feet. >> reporter: meanwhile, others are trying to cope on their own. phyllis has been living in staten island since 1997. and she saw disaster brewing. she and her husband evacuated to safety and stayed with family on higher ground. after she saw that her home was lifted away, she went looking for it. the 62-year-old grandmother made her way across a waterlogged field of debris and found her greatest treasures scattered nearly a half mile away. >> that's my mom. my father. my mom was a simple lady. >> reporter: did you have any copies of this? >> no. this is the only wedding photograph of my mom. >> reporter: finding all these photographs -- >> they mean the world to me. >> reporter: but most of phyllis
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and her husband's world is gone. >> our whole life is here. how do we start over? 30 years to get our home and now he retired and where do we go? how do we start to build a life all over again? >> reporter: you're in a state of shock. you're overwhelmed. >> it's like a nightmare. one minute, it's like i'll wake up and this is all a dream. we wanted to spend the rest of our lives here, never wanted to leave here. i want to go home but there's no home. and that's killing me. >> reporter: pretty emotional stuff. meantime tonight we've learned that the secretary of homeland security and the deputy administrator of fema will be arriving here tomorrow to take a close-up look at the recovery efforts here in staten island. now back to you, brian. >> what a situation out there tonight, ann. we pointed out on "nightly news" for those not familiar with new york, two things, number one, if
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we were on top of this very building here in, we could almost see where you are. it's that close to gleaming midtown manhattan. number two, she's wearing a ladder 77 fdny hoodie. so many cops and firefighters live on staten island. it's a huge part of the beating heart of the population there. >> reporter: that's exactly right. a lot of firefighters, police officers, detectives, teachers, this is a blue collar, working class, very catholic community. very much service oriented. and so for them to speak out and complain as they are about not getting service, it's kind of ironic, brian. >> absolutely right. ann curry in a very sad place, ann, thanks. our coverage continues tonight. we're going to go to the jersey shore 130 miles of coastline, many of us call home and home has changed forever. as we head to a break, we wanted to show you this video which has surfaced showing the moment the lights went out in manhattan.
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at the height of the storm. creating a dark and strange world in lower manhattan, though not without its silver lining. [ rv guy ] enbrel may not work for everyone -- and may not clear you completely, but for many, it gets skin clearer fast, within 2 months, and keeps it clearer up to 9 months. [ male announcer ] because enbrel®, etanercept, suppresses your immune system, it may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal, events including infections, tuberculosis, lymphoma, other cancers, and nervous system and blood disorders have occurred. before starting enbrel, your doctor should test you for tuberculosis and discuss whether you've been to a region where certain fungal infections are common. don't start enbrel if you have an infection like the flu. tell your doctor if you're prone to infections, have cuts or sores, have had hepatitis b,
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welcome back. we want to show you this live camera location we found in manhattan because it perfectly shows a tale of two cities. as we pan to the right, look at where the lights just stop. and that happened at the height of the storm, a power substation blew. a lot of other things happened. and the lights went out and it left us with lower manhattan with no lights and midtown and the upper reaches of the city where it feels like a thursday night in new york. and walking from one of those worlds to the other is truly like going to another world, as harry smith reports for us
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tonight. >> reporter: the sweet sound of success. on manhattan's east 11th street between avenues b and c, progress is measured one generator at a time. >> celebration for a generator working. >> reporter: this restaurant owner is the block's unofficial mayor, on duty day and night. >> i've been through a lot of these storms before and it seems to me almost every one, those who help themselves are the ones who get out of it. i'm watching you. you were pretty much trying to help yourself. >> that's the only way. if i have to tell you that i had other options, no, i didn't. >> reporter: this one block in the city's east village is a microcosm of new york, a melting pot of income, education and ethnicity. on monday night, all felt sandy's wrath. first came the water, then an
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explosion two blocks away at coned rocked the neighborhood, leaving flooded basements, the huge mess to clean up. we found one woman cleaning out her waterlogged storage base by flashlight. have you moments in the last couple of days where the stress was just -- >> yeah, it's depressing. >> reporter: edwin cruz brought an rv into the neighborhood, an act so simple it's downright heroic. >> i'm 31 and all i want to do is see my mom. i haven't spoken to her in days. it means a lot to get to charge. ♪ >> reporter: down the block, a street preacher sings and plays songs of faith here on east 11th, people have begun to believe in each other. new yorkers are by nature a fairly resilient bunch, every
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day here presents its own challenges. and in this crisis, that can-do spirit is a necessity. reuben henderson already has his restaurant cleaned up and ready for customers. >> this is our little bar. >> reporter: the only thing missing, electricity. >> last year, we had irene. and then we overcame. and this year is a little harder. we're going to be better after this. i'm telling you. yeah, we're going to be better. i'm sorry. >> thank you. >> reporter: longtime resident is doing her best to salvage the ruins of her flooded apartment. >> thank you. >> reporter: she and her boys are getting the job done. but it sure would be nice to have a little help. have you heard any response from the government, from fema, from anybody? >> nobody's come to my door. hey, fema, come on down, knock on my door. >> reporter: at nighttime, 11th street has a different feel.
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it's a little eerie being in the blackout zone, especially when you look at the sky. we're in the section of the city has no power. but there's so much light in the part of the city that does have power, it reflects up into the sky and there's more light in the sky than there is on the street. so this is what it's like? >> this is what it's like. >> reporter: melissa is a nanny who lives in a sixth-floor walk-up. she spends her nights curled up with a book and her dog. >> reporter: do you feel safe? >> extremely safe. my neighbors who i barely spoke to before this happened, we all have an open-door policy now. >> reporter: a relative newcomer to new york, she didn't love this city until the storm came. >> my neighbors have been wonderful. and we've barely even met before. it's just like, it's true, in times of crisis, people come together. so it's been great. i go to sleep with my door open. >> reporter: as the days turn into nights, goodwill and good
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humor have been an almost sufficient substitute for electricity. but even she is starting to run out of power. are you starting to get a little frustrated? >> i'm very frustrated. very frustrated. no help from anybody. only my husband and i and a few friends and guys that work with us, willing to help. but that's it. that's the only thing. >> reporter: but one place did get help from a heretofore unknown u.s. entity. we watched the clean-up activity at evelyn's, incredibly, they opened in time for halloween. >> in particular, we had help from the united states bartender's guild -- not the united states marine corps, not the united states anything. the united states what? >> the bartender's gild. the new york chapter. >> harry smith is with us from high above manhattan. harry, it does strike me, it
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takes a little bit of the thrill out of the upgrade from the iphone 4s to the 5. without a charge, it makes a really good skipping rock down your flooded city street, doesn't it? >> reporter: and oh, by the way, the service down there where there is no power because the repeaters can't be charged is really crummy, too. there's a lot of people trying to figure out how to get along. there's a certain reservoir of goodwill. and it's being spent day by day by day. quite honestly, it's starting to get a little bit low. >> we sure are sensing that part of it, as i said earlier, the kind of mechanism of a civilized society has stopped running for a lot of people. harry u thank you for chronicling life in lower manhattan on a fourth straight dark night, yes, sir? >> reporter: yeah, i just need to get a shoutout here where we have the haves and the have nots. we need to thank the rare bar
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and grill for this purchase tonight. >> and the yankees owe you some thanks after a less-than-illustrious postseason. harry smith in lower manhattan. a bit later on, the people you meet on the streets of new york during a crisis and what this particular couple was up to. ofk during a crisis and what this particular couple was up to. ♪'s smartphone... dad's tablet... or lauren's smartphone... at&t has a plan built to help make families' lives easier. introducing at&t mobile share. one plan lets you share data on up to 10 devices with unlimited talk and text. add a tablet for only $10 per month. at&t. add a tablet for only $10 per month. picture great holiday savings... at the petsmart winter welcome sale. save up to 30% on hundreds of items, including select kong® dog and cat products. and all kong® dog collars are $4.99 each,
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♪ we are farmers ♪ bum, ba-da-bum, bum, bum, bum ♪ welcome back as we continue this special coverage. he was last in the news for running into a house fire to rescue his neighbors. tonight, he was in the news because he invited his neighbors to stay at his house with him. he happens to be the mayor of newark, new jersey, the big city
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just across the way from new york. and they are having big problems. and tonight, tom brokaw reports on cory booker, a hands-on guy with his hands full. >> this is mayor cory booker. we have a power situation, obviously. >> reporter: even before hurricane sandy invaded his town, cory booker had one of the toughest jobs in politics. >> you guys don't have any young babies or kids in there, do you? >> reporter: trying to rebuild newark, constantly buffeted by the winds of poverty and crime. now, 94% of newark is without power. >> we need some lights on in here! >> right now, i'm sending a tweet out to the resident that was concerned about her sick child. >> reporter: booker, once a rhodes scholar, is a high-tech mayor. and his constituents know how to catch up. here's a tweet about a power outage sent by, get this, champagne mommy at playboy
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bunny. >> what kind of twitter handle do you have here? look at this cute little baby. i have cold milk. we have diapers. i hope those are going to fit. >> reporter: i caught up with him. and he talked about this new world of governing. can you imagine your predecessors going through this without one of these? >> look, i can't even remember three, four years ago before i had that power. just for me, the power of twitter alone, i have tens of thousands of my residents who are letting me know about what's going on, telling me about their neighbors that need somebody to get to them right away. >> reporter: i know that just being mayor in good times is tough. does this just exhaust you? do you say at some point, i can't do this? >> i'm running on adrenaline, caffeine and a love of the community. >> reporter: by using twitter to connect with his community,
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mayor booker says he's helping to keep the faith. >> we've had amazing zero crimes of opportunity, no looting, no problems like that. i'm going round the clock. >> reporter: booker achieved superhero status when earlier this year he came home to find his neighbor's house on fire. he charged through the flames to rescue her. you're the hands-on mayor. you rushed into a burning building to save a woman, you're all over the city. now you're the diaper deliveryman. >> people in crises don't realize how important the small things are. this doesn't necessarily have to be refrigerated right now. >> reporter: was that family surprised to see -- >> surprising a lot of folks when you get a chance to show up. >> reporter: with an armful of diapers. >> when they tweet you and you call them and say, what's the problem? i'll handle it. people are surprised but appreciative. it ignites that spirit within others as well. >> reporter: booker knows that technology only goes so far.
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to be a successful politician in any way, a tweet will never replace a hug. >> you need a hug? thank you so much. >> that's how it's done in newark. let's take a drive down the shore, about 65 miles south of there, ron allen is in toms river tonight. and, ron, you and i were together last night in point pleasant beach. now you're in toms river, which i would say is kind of the classic middle class, central jersey shore suburb, 80% of us have an aunt hazel. mine lived on jackson avenue in toms river. we used to visit her, go over to the beach. what have you seen in your travels and what are you learning in getting this masters degree on the jersey shore? reporter: well, first, let me say, i know this place as well, too. i've covered disasters all over the world, but jersey is my home as well. i'm from the northern part of the state, jersey city, montclair.
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down here, the story is really the destruction that you see that is just really mind-boggling. communities so hard hit that days later, thousands of people haven't been able to even see what happened because they can't come back. authorities are still keeping them out. there's a lot of anger, frustration, a lot of tension because people want to come back in and see what's happened to their homes. they also want to protect their homes. we've been hearing more stories about looting and people concerned about that. we've also heard stories about what people are calling pirates, trying to rob homes in the darkness. there has been progress. there's been power restored to about 1 million homes. but that still means about 40 percent of the state is in the dark. driving around at night is very hazardous. bottom line, people are taking this day by day and not being too concerned about this overwhelming disaster that's here, trying to take it day by day and slowly trying to figure out ways to recover. >> ron, you're so right about that moving target that, line between order and chaos in a
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society. ron allen, great work in the field this week covering this awful story. thanks for being with us. if you're from new jersey, it has proven best to be loud and proud about it because there have been just too many jokes over the years. then came the tv show that made all of us who are actually from the jersey shore have to defend the jersey shore all over again. sadly in the face of this oncoming storm, turned out there was nothing that could defend our beloved shoreline which has been staggered, badly shaken and just plain rearranged. if you've already started hearing comparisons to katrina, there's a reason for it. things are starting to look and feel like a deep, long-haul disaster. the grisly business of finding bodies, the daily realization that the face of the earth has changed, especially along the jersey shore. this is the new contour of the jersey shore. and right where we are is the
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borderline between two towns which have been in the news, bayhead to the north. six miles down is seaside heights, new jersey, almost impossible to see what's left of the ferris wheel and the amusement tower. from seaside heights, new jersey, this is what we found on the beach, one of the 57 chevy replicas that was part of the ride. the ocean gave this quite a ride. but just pause and think about the number of 4 and 5-year-olds who got their first thrill on a carnival ride at the beach right in this front seat with the safety bar down to protect them. there are two kinds of damage along the jersey shore. these are the first pictures taken from beach level of some of the fanciest sections. one of these houses was valued at $13 million the day before the storm arrived. and these were some of the nicest beachfront properties
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anywhere on the east coast. ♪ then there's the jersey shore we all experienced as kids, the boardwalk where everybody in this area went, starting where we were yesterday in point pleasant beach. i first walked these boards holding my dad's hands when i was a little kid. and now i bring my kids back on weekends in the summer and that's the way it is here. >> it is, it is. it's a great location to go to. look at the beach. it's a huge beach. and the boards are actually wooden boards. you smell the wood of the boardwalk, the salt of the ocean. it's great. >> reporter: and it will be great again. >> it will, exactly. >> reporter: american flags are big here. this is just one before-and-after view from one beachfront porch. the flags are all gone along with the earth. so if you still have your flag, it's a big deal as it was for bill mullins yesterday who we witnessed holding his own flag-raising ceremony. >> they could i not before i go
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back north put the flag up. >> reporter: good man. >> jersey shore is still here. we'll be back, no doubt about it. >> reporter: a brief moment of joy and strength in a state where so many people are hurting. and if you ever think that all governors do is veto spending bills and open new industrial parks, take a moment and listen to what yesterday was like for governor chris christie in just one flooded new jersey town. >> i can't get anything done. >> reporter: one piece at a time, all right? >> thank you. >> it's all ruined down there. every house, ruined! >> reporter: this entire region is still in shock. when you start to think it's going to get better, you suddenly remember it's going to take a long time. and it's never going to be normal again. people and places are gone in a place that we trusted with a lot of our summertime memories. luckily we know some of them will be back. and on top of everything we've
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seen all day, this may be the saddest sight of all. that's because this is hoffman's. and every weekend all summer long, this is where you end up if you're from this part of the jersey shore. like everybody else, you've told yourself all day, even during dinner, you're going to be strong, tonight's the night you're not going to do it. but you end up here. this place is packed with families, saturday night, sunday night, all summer long. they go in, get a number, come out here and think about their ice cream order. that's why it's such a sad sight with no power, no lights, a curfew on the streets. and that is why perhaps the folks at hoffman's took it upon themselves to urge all the rest of us to stay strong.
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discussing your feelings. ♪ joe may have your back, but johan has your feet. gevalia. meet me in the coffee aisle. joe may have your back, but johan has your feet. whatever it takes, get to sears "one day sale" this saturday, with friday preview. coats for her just $19.99. all diehard work boots for $39.99. and up to 50% of all tool storage. this is how to gift. this is sears. picture great holiday savings... at the petsmart winter welcome sale. save up to 30% on hundreds of items, including select kong® dog and cat products. and all kong® dog collars are $4.99 each, friday through sunday only, at petsmart®.
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welcome back. our chief foreign correspondent, richard engel, is used to flying over terrible scenes by helicopter. he did so again today, only in this country, in this city, where he saw some terrible things down below and saw clearly some of the challenges before us from the air where richard says you can clearly see a merging of weather and national security.
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>> reporter: four days after hurricane sandy left people feeling like a bomb had dropped on them, we took the the skies with this detective on an nypd helicopter to survey the damage. >> the force of this water, that's why they tell people to evacuate. there's no playing with the ocean. but just to see it after is pure amazement. >> reporter: from about 1,000 feet, we could see how this storm pummeled the empire state. >> the boardwalk is completely torn up here. >> reporter: boardwalks in splinters. >> we lost 100 houses in breezy. >> reporter: burned black patches where homes used to be. entire harbors tossed. an oil tanker, breached and leaking. crews have begun to pump out lower manhattan. but some areas are profoundly waterlogged, like the subways. we went underground to see. >> there's still under water
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there now. >> we have water all the way up to the mezzanine. >> reporter: joe is in charge of getting mass transit drained and running. >> reporter: anything that can be done to prevent this from happening again? >> we looked at this storm right from the beginning as a category 1. so we began covering all the vents in the area with plywood. we boarded up all the station entrances that we could. in the future, if you're going to prevent storms like this, category 1, category 2, with storm surges like this, you would have to actually raise the bulkhead and create more of a seawall to prevent the water from coming in. >> hurricane sandy is a wake-up call to all of us in the city and on long island. >> reporter: this oceanographer has been arguing for years that the new york metropolitan area needs a better plan. >> that means designing and building storm surge barriers like many cities in europe already have. >> reporter: in the netherlands, following a major storm in 1953
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which drowned thousands, the government built an extensive series of storm surge barriers. >> if we had such barriers in place during hurricane sandy, there would have been no damage at all. >> reporter: this animation, produced by the dutch company, shows what a barrier in new york harbor right look like. if a surge was coming, 25-foot-high gates would drop and then swing shut to block the water until the danger had passed. >> the surge is completely blocked by the system. >> reporter: but bowman's idea would require years of study and cost as much as $15 billion, a huge amount. but still, just about a third of the estimated cost of rebuilding after sandy. >> we can't put all our eggs in that basket. >> reporter: cynthia, who heads the climate impacts group at columbia university, cautions that barriers are not the only answer. >> the better way is for new yorkers to be smart, from engineered solutions like tidal
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barriers, fixing the subways where they're vulnerable, fixing our seawall, remaking our wetlands so that we can across our whole region and for all our 21.5 million people protect against the next hurricane sandy. >> reporter: and with scientists now predicting that the sea level could rise between three and six feet by the end of the century, even moderate storms could be catastrophic. >> we have to expect this to be the new norm. we have to take bold new approaches if we want to have cities to survive. >> this has everything. it's got politics, environment, national security. in endorsing obama today, mayor bloomberg mentioned climate change. and as i said to the governor, it's already new amsterdam. could the city be the new new amsterdam? >> i think it's important to start thinking about infrastructure as essential national security. for the last ten years plus, the united states has had a main national security priority, the thing we've spent the most money
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on, a trillion-plus dollars, that's been bringing democracy to iraq and afghanistan, with very questionable results. people i've spoken to, experts in the field say, we would be a lot safer, not just richer, if he had spent a lot of that money on improving infrastructure. that is not to say that counterterrorism isn't important. it certainly is. but they're related because the stronger your society is, the more protected you are also from a terrorist attack. >> may have to keep you around to cover this for a while. richard engel, thanks. good to see you. this disaster has been a great equalizer. if you're living in a place where the water rises, the power goes out, that makes you just like everybody else. those who can try to help and because you never know who you're going to meet on the streets of new york, here's what happened when we met up with alec baldwin and his wife. that encounter from nbc's natalie morales. >> reporter: we're used to seeing alec baldwin like this. >> it's good to see you back at
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work. >> reporter: or as the popular target of the tabloids. but that's not how a lot of new yorkers know him. they know him as their neighbor. he and his wife live in lower manhattan, an area that has spent the week in darkness. >> as you can see, there's no power here in the east village anywhere. so in our building, you can assume that people who are elderly can't go up and down the stairs to get meals, water, any prescriptions, walk their dogs. >> reporter: they wanted to help their neighbors but not intrude on them. so they did it out of the sight of cameras. >> so we volunteered to come today to stand by and see if we can be of any help to them. we left to go to a hotel because we can't take our dogs up -- we didn't want to take them up and down 12 flights of stairs. >> reporter: even as the storm approached new york city, the photographers who normally dogged baldwin caught him walking his dog. no raincoat, no umbrella.
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>> the day aft approaching storm was very warm and there wasn't a lot of rain. you can see, there's scaffolding up in front of buildings and scaffolding of any size on buildings in manhattan becomes a good dog run. been doing a lot of scaffolding runs. >> reporter: this is not the first time baldwin has volunteered during a hurricane. during katrina in august 2005, he went to kovington, louisiana, to work with habitat for humanity. this time around, when not volunteering, the baldwins have found time for one of their favorite activities, tweeting. >> we were doing a lot with twitter because we lost power. we don't tend to watch a lot of tv ourselves. >> except brian williams. >> of course, brian williams. >> new york is not all rich people who are in these very, very lofty professions and everything. new york is a lot of people who live paycheck to paycheck and they're not going to get a paycheck this week. >> reporter: born in long island, baldwin is a new yorker who loves new yorkers. >> it's weird.
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it's like new yorkers are very flynn-teethed people. and if you're a new yorker, everybody gives each other five feet of space on the street. but at the same time, they're fiercely proud to be from new york. and part of that is to care for people in a way that we can. but apropos of people being nice to each other, i think i was very nice to you these last 24 hours. >> i think new yorkers really do love each other. the moment something goes wrong, we fight for each other fiercely. >> just one couple, one guy with a story like so many others. and there are other story that is emerged from this storm right after this. no drawing from a vial. dial the exact dose. inject by pushing a button. flexpen® is insulin delivery...
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that time of the broadcast. for those of you who are able to see us, we're awfully glad you're with us. no one is having any fun these days after this storm on the east coast, though, as you're about to see. some have tried. first of all, about this storm, it's possible to see from space some of the places across this huge region where people have no power and can't see us right
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now. david letterman and jimmy fallon who tape their shows here in new york played to empty houses, no audience because people were ordered off the streets of new york in the teeth of the storm. and their guests were game, including denzel washington and donald trump appeared this week wearing his customary orange top. a lot of new yorkers who have power and need a little lift every day have come to love mayor bloomberg's storm briefings. first, for the woman who may be the most expressive signer for the deaf in all of human history. and then the moment each day when the mayor switches to spanish or something awfully close. [ speaking spanish ] the mayor gets credit for diligence, if not style. he's been taking lessons for year, during spare moments at home, in the car, on the subway before it was flooded. even if his spanish is delivered
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in his same boston native accent he uses for english, in this light, you get points for trying. [ speaking spanish ] >> reporter: running a city of 8 million people plunged into partial darkness and chaos is difficult enough. social media played a big role in this storm. it helped get a lot of information out. sadly, it also spread a lot of lies. the false twitter rumors included the new york stock exchange, false. the ominous storm over lady liberty, fake. so were the floodwaters where people already had enough to worry about without any enhancement from shut-ins with a bad idea and too much free time n. a related story, brownie is back. michael brown who helped bring us the largest domestic human rights outrage of the modern era, the katrina response, said this week, the lesson of hurricane sandy is that people need to chill, something we intend to pass along to these
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homeowners as soon as the embers from their homes have thoroughly cooled. and finally, about new jersey governor chris christie. he has been tactile and getting high marks for managing this crisis so far. and if you don't think this is personal for him, listen to his partial list of his favorite places that were lost on the seaside boardwalk, a summer staple for a lot of us. >> the roller coaster is in the ocean. the boardwalk is gone. it is literally gone. the big sausage and pepper stands in the middle is gone. >> reporter: after all this loss you might be curious as to why rush limbaugh went after governor christie today. it was because he's getting along so well with the president, working together, saying nice things about barack obama, just when we feared the storm wiped away everything, we learned politics survived. proof that life goes on. and by the way, if you're looking to help the victims of this disaster, we've put a whole
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list of ways to do that on our website tonight, that's and tomorrow night, we're putting on a telethon. the networks of nbc universal will air a benefit concert for victims of hurricane sandy. live from this very building. at times, it's going to look like a sons of new jersey convention around here. bruce will be here live. so will bon jovi, jon stewart will drop by a ton of performers. that's tomorrow night at 8:00, 7:00 central. and jon bon jovi will also appear tomorrow morning on "today." that's going to do it for us for tonight. for everybody in the studio and out in the field who worked so hard to bring you this broadcast, thank you for being here with us. good night from new york


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